Patio Cleaning: Can You Pressure Wash Your Patio Safely?

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Man pressure washing in pants in the backyard near potted plants


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Patio & Yard


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A nice and well-kept patio can enhance the aesthetic of your home. But you could argue that half the charm of a patio is how clean it is.

Cleaning it can be quite a task depending on the size of your patio. So, the question is, can you pressure wash a patio?

Pressure washing your patio is completely fine. It is safe and saves time too. But there are risks involved. Pressure washing itself is not the problem. But inexperienced owners might use too much pressure or the wrong nozzle for the job, causing damage.

In some cases, it might be best to call professionals. Otherwise, pressure washing is completely safe and satisfying if you know what you are doing. Keep reading to know more about patio cleaning!

Man pressure washing in pants in the backyard near potted plants

Can You Pressure Wash A Patio: Everything You Need To Know

One of the most useful things about pressure washing is saving time. Many people might believe that pressure washing wastes a lot of water. That cannot be further from the truth.

Pressure washing does not use much water. It uses a reasonable amount of water, albeit with very high pressure. So, you can get the job done with less water and more effectively.

It is a fast and easy way to clean large areas. But what about patios? Is it safe to pressure wash your patio ? The short answer is yes, and you can pressure wash your patio without any worries.

But you need to be careful, though. More on this a bit later. For now, let’s see how you can pressure wash your patio.

How To Pressure Wash Your Patio Safely?

When it comes to pressure washing your patio, you need to be mindful of a couple of things.

Firstly, it is wearing the right gear, which starts with wearing protective eye gear. If you don’t, small debris can fly off and hurt you.

Secondly, safeguard your home and furniture. You can cover them with plastic wrap or plastic sheeting. This will help protect sensitive areas like windows and doors.

A pressure washer uses quite a lot of force. So, you also need to ensure that you use the right amount of pressure. Let’s see how you can go about doing it. 

Step 1: Preparation

Preparation is very important before you start pressure washing. Plan ahead. Set aside a day to do the groundwork first. This will make things go smoothly. And you will not have any unexpected things to deal with.

Gather all the right tools for the job. For example, a rotating tip for wooden patios is recommended by many experts. Then there is also the right protective equipment I talked about earlier.

Check to see what pressure your washers need to be at. Pressure washers use enough force even to etch solid brick. That is not a joke.

So, double-check the right pressure settings and know you might need to use different amounts of force or pressure for different areas of your patio.

Step 2: Moving The Furniture

The last thing you want to do is damage your furniture. It is always a good idea to move them before you start. This is because of two things. Firstly, it is to avoid damaging them. 

And secondly, clearing out the furniture from the patio will give you easier access and a better ability to wash your patio thoroughly, making getting into those tight spaces much easier.

This means removing all things like chairs, sofas, tables, firepits, etc from the area.

Step 3: Sweep Debris

Before you start blasting your pressure washer, there is some housekeeping needed. Do a dry sweep to get rid of all the large debris.

When you start washing, the high pressure may cause large debris to fly off.

I am sure you do not need me to tell you that it can be very dangerous, so make sure to do a thorough sweep of the area at least once before washing.

This will help get rid of any debris that might be there. Besides, removing large debris like dirt, leaves, and maybe even small branches here and there will prepare the area for the wash.

Step 4: Actual Wash

Now, it is time for the actual wash. If your patio has stubborn stains, you can use a cleaner. But also, be sure to get into those cracks and tight spots. Otherwise, dirt and grime might accumulate and contaminate it.

Since most patios are wooden, you need to follow the proper technique. Always wash with the grain. Never do it against the grain. This will decrease the chance of splinters. Those can be quite painful.

Here is a pro tip. Before washing a large portion of your patio or the main part, test your pressure washer settings first. You can pick a small spot on the side or somewhere that is not in plain sight. 

This will help you ensure you have dialed in the right settings. When you are going over the joints, take it easy. Otherwise, you might ruin it by blasting the sand out. That is not something you want.

Step 5: Final Touches

Pressure washing is not the last part. You need to clean the surfaces again. Remove any detergent residue that has remained.

Soap or detergent residue will become sticky and gross and attract more dirt if it dries up. So, you will just create more work for yourself later on. 

It is always a good idea to give your patio a good rinse after pressure washing to ensure that everything is clean and has no soap residue. After washing it and rinsing it, let it dry.

Some wooden patio decks might need some extra work. You might need to sand them down gently after washing them.

Pressure Washing Woes To Avoid

As I mentioned, pressure washing is completely safe. But only if you know what you are doing. Otherwise, you might end up ruining your patio.

So, while the problem is not with pressure washing itself, it can be just inexperienced. 

Just to reiterate, pressure washing uses a lot of force, and if you don’t do it correctly, you can cause visible damage to your patio. If this happens, it will look ugly; you might need to call professionals to fix the mess.

It is generally a good idea to start washing only after researching and knowing how to use the tool. Not only that. You should also be familiar with the right pressure washing techniques.

Damages include anything from visible ugly lines, pitting, and damage to the sand joint. Sometimes it can even damage the mortar between the bricks.

Some common pressure washing mistakes may include using much more pressure than needed. And using the incorrect nozzle.

Should You Get Professional Help?

You might be wondering, should you get professional help in that case?

Honestly, if you are not comfortable doing it yourself, it is best to get someone with experience. It will give you some peace of mind. And you can be sure that the job will get done correctly. 

But we all know how fun DIY-ing things can be. And it is your patio, so you might want to clean and maintain it in a particular way. That is completely fine.

But only do it yourself if you know what you are doing.

The pressure washing process is completely safe. Just be sure to use the right technique and tools for the job.

Is Pressure Washing Necessary for Deep Cleaning a Concrete Patio?

Yes, pressure washing is necessary to deep clean concrete patio surfaces. Over time, dirt, grime, and mold can build up and penetrate the porous material, making it difficult to remove with just soap and water. Pressure washing effectively blasts away these stubborn stains and restores the patio’s appearance.

Final Thoughts on Pressure Washing Your Patio

So, can you pressure wash a patio? Yes, you can. But be sure to know what you are doing. It is not worth pressure washing yourself if you will ruin your patio.

Use the right technique or call for professional help if you are unsure.